South Africa’s Transnet Profit Dips With Infrastructure Roll-Out

Transnet SOC Ltd., the state-owned South African ports and rail operator, said after-tax profit for the six months through September fell as a 650 billion-rand ($75 billion) infrastructure roll-out pushed up borrowing costs.

Profit fell 25 percent to 1.8 billion rand, Chief Executive Officer Brian Molefe told reporters in Johannesburg today. Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization rose 7.1 percent 10.1 billion rand, he said.

President Jacob Zuma is banking on greater power and transport capacity to boost exports and create jobs. As part of that infrastructure plan, Transnet plans to spend 300 billion rand to develop railways and ports in Africa’s biggest economy over the next seven years.

Transnet in July issued a 10-year $1 billion bond, its biggest single issuance. The Johannesburg-based company boosted capital expenditure by 35 percent to 12.8 billion rand in the six-month period, Molefe said.

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